What are a person’s rights if they were the innocent victim of a high speed chase?

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What are a person’s rights if they were the innocent victim of a high speed chase?

Local police engaged a high speed pursuit because the accused backed into a cruiser and drove off. Police knew who he was and where he lived. Accused ran a red light at speeds that reached 100 mph through an extremely busy intersection on a major roadway with police in pursuit. The chase continued for a few miles when he tried to pass traffic and was bumped by a van forcing it into oncoming traffic. He hitt a small car head on. The victim suffered life threatening injuries and will have a long recovery. Should they speak with a personal injury attorney. In Montgomery County, OH.

Asked on July 22, 2011 Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, the victim should definitely speak with a personal injury attorney. Note that he or she will likely not be able to recover from the police, since there is, for public policy reasons, substantial immunity afforded the police from lawsuits for injuries caused, directly or indirectly, by them in the line of their duty, so long as they are not reckless or intentionally causing injury; however, it's worth pursuing. Furthermore, the victim may be able to sue and recover from the accused, so long as the accused has assets (e.g. savings, brokerage account, property) or a reasonable income to pay. (The accused's insurance, if any, will probably not cover, since it generally does not apply to criminal acts.) There may also be recourse to the victim's own uninsured/underinsured driver policy, if any.


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